Jonathan Griffin

Criticism and essays on art and culture

Tag: Lauren Mackler

Made in L.A.

The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and the Huntington Museum, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens, San Marino

Fulton Leroy Washington (aka MR. WASH), Mr. Rene # MAN POWER, 2011, oil on stretched canvas, 61 × 50.8 cm.
Courtesy: the artist, The Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens, San Marino and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles

Before entering the long-delayed (and now revised) ‘Made in L.A. 2020: a version’, I pitied its poor curators, whose exhibition has been kyboshed by a succession of lockdowns. Originally scheduled to open in June, the biennial – split this year between the Hammer Museum and the Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens in San Marino – has lain partly dormant, partly unfinished. With (almost) all works installed, museum leaders allowed in a few members of the press, who, they hoped, might grant ‘Made in L.A. 2020’ a little exposure to daylight. (The biennial is currently expected to open to the public next year.)1

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Allen Ruppersberg

Ruppersberg hotel

At 6am on 9 February, 1971, Allen Ruppersberg was thrown out of bed onto the floor of his studio. Later, he would learn that the 6.6 magnitude earthquake – Los Angeles’ worst in decades – had killed 64 people and caused half a billion dollars in damage. It also delayed construction of the new California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), 30 miles north of Los Angeles in Valencia. When CalArts finally occupied its new building in November that year, the progressive school ushered in a new era for Los Angeles’ art world. Read the rest of this entry »